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The first of two storms hits the Southland

February 16, 2011 12:00:00 AM PST
The rain on Wednesday is the first of two storms that will hit Southern California this week.

In La Canada Flintridge, it rained consistently throughout the morning. Heavy rain is always a particular concern in the area, so a frontend loader and sandbags are on standby.

Crews removed dirt and debris Wednesday morning, trying to keep the runoff flowing. Small rocks were falling off the mountain, but nothing like serious mudslides.

The system seems to be working. Gutters are clear, K-rails are doing their job, and the wash is not near capacity.

Resident Steve Brown says he isn't worried.

"Not unless we get a few real hard days in a row. Typically when my rain gutters can't handle the rain then I may get a little concerned," he said.

Wet roads, though, are creating a challenge for drivers and those working outside. However, for others umbrellas are a welcome sight.

"It's a good thing, we need it," said Glendale resident Gary Lofvendahl. "We're supposed to get it in February."

La Canada Flintridge residents said they are especially optimistic because of what they saw in December. The fact that they were able to survive all of those straight days of showers makes them feel confident when it comes to this week's rain.

Along the coast there was precipitation Tuesday night into Wednesday along the same stretch of Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu that suffered some closures last month due to mudslides. Geologists will be keeping an eye on the integrity of the hillsides throughout Malibu, heading north to Oxnard.

Orange County communities are also seeing some rain. Overnight the cities of Costa Mesa, Newport Beach and Santa Ana were all reporting rain.

In Riverside, the rain has been coming through intermittingly. There's a hint of the blue sky, but what residents have been feeling most immediately is the wind.

Those who commuted into work in the morning found it a bit slow going. Residents said they hope this round of the storms won't be as bad as the December storms.

Even though the rain is starting to accumulate in Riverside, what aren't being felt are chilly temperatures. The temperature movement hasn't come in yet, but nonetheless residents are prepared for the heavy rain to move in.